Employment-Based Visa: Everything You Need to Know


By Imagility

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Table of Contents 

What is an employment-based visa?
Types of employment-based visa
How to apply for an employment-based visa
Fee for applying for an employment-based visa
The Bottom line 

Are you considering staying and working in the United States? If this is your plan, an employment-based visa is the first step to fulfilling your ambition to work and lead a successful life in the US. Depending on your educational qualifications and skill set that satisfy the minimum eligibility criteria for an employment-based visa, there are five visa categories you can choose from to apply.

In this article, we have discussed all five employment-based visa categories, including the process to apply and the fee for submitting employment-based visa applications.

Let’s dive in!

What is an employment-based visa?

An employment-based visa is a type of visa that allows foreign professionals to come to the United States to work for a US-based employer. This type of visa is available to individuals who hold specific skills or qualifications that are in high demand in the US job market, such as scientists, engineers, medical professionals, and business executives. The annual cap limit for employment-based visas is 140,000 per year.

Employment-based immigrant visas can be a pathway to permanent residency in the US, as most categories require employers to sponsor their employees for a green card.

To obtain an employment-based visa, applicants must have a job offer from a US-based employer, meet the specific qualifications for their chosen visa category, and go through a rigorous application and approval process with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Types of employment-based visa

There are typically five types of employment-based visas. They are:

  • EB-1 visa

The EB-1 visa is reserved for individuals with extraordinary abilities in the arts, sciences, education, business, or athletics. This category also includes outstanding professors or researchers and multinational executives or managers.

  • EB-2 visa

The EB-2 visa is for individuals who have advanced degrees or exceptional abilities in arts, sciences, or business. This category also includes individuals who will work in jobs that require an advanced degree, such as doctors, lawyers, or engineers.

  • EB-3 visa

The EB-3 visa is designed for skilled workers, professionals, and other unskilled workers. This category also includes individuals who have obtained a bachelor’s degree and have two years of work experience.

  • EB-4 visa

The EB-4 visa is for special immigrants, such as religious workers, broadcasters, and armed forces members.

  • EB-5 visa

The EB-5 visa is for investors willing to invest a minimum of $500,000 to $1 million in a new job-creating enterprise that will generate at least 10 full-time jobs.

How to apply for an employment-based visa

The application process is almost the same for all five employment-based visa categories. Let’s take a closer look.

Step 1: Determine which employment-based visa category you qualify for

There are several categories of employment-based visas, and each category has its own set of requirements. You must determine which category you qualify for based on your education, work experience, and skill set.

Step 2: Find a US employer to sponsor your visa

Once you have determined the visa category you are eligible for, you must find a US employer willing to sponsor your visa. The employer must file a petition on your behalf with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Step 3: Obtain a labor certification

After your employer files a petition on your behalf, they will need to obtain a labor certification from the US Department of Labor. The labor certification verifies that no qualified US workers are available for the job, and hiring foreign professionals will not affect US-based employees.

Step 4: Complete the visa application

Once USCIS approves your employer’s petition, you must complete the visa application. This will require submitting various forms and supporting documents, including your passport, education and work experience documentation, and medical examination results.

Step 5: Attend the visa interview

After completing the visa application, you must attend the interview at a US embassy or consulate in your home country. The interview will assess your qualifications, intentions, and eligibility for the visa.

Fee for applying for an employment-based visa

Applying for an employment-based immigrant visa requires payment of several fees, which both the employer and the employee must bear. The fees vary depending on the type of visa and the location where the application is processed. Below is a breakdown of the fees:

For the employee:

  • A processing fee of $230 for Form DS-260/261
  • Medical examination fee
  • Fees for any required supporting documents
  • Documents translation (foreign languages to English) fees

For the employer:

  • A DOL Labor Certification fee
  • A USCIS Form I-140 petition filing fee of $700
  • A USCIS Form I-526 petition filing fee of $3,675 (applicable for EB-5 visas)

It is crucial to note that these fees are subject to change, and it’s essential to check the latest fee requirements before submitting the visa application. Additionally, applicants and their employers should consider seeking the guidance of an immigration expert to ensure all necessary fees are paid correctly and on time.

The Bottom line

Employment-based visas provide a pathway for foreign nationals to come to the United States and contribute their skills to the American economy. However, the application process can be complex and time-consuming. It is essential to work with an immigration attorney to ensure that your application is successful. With the right guidance and support, you can achieve your dream of working in the United States.

Imagility, an end-to-end immigration software, provides beneficiaries the platform to collaborate with petitioners and attorneys to craft a well-structured petition quickly and efficiently. The platform helps simplify the immigration process for beneficiaries and increases the chances of visa approvals.

Reach out to us for a demo today at sales@imagility.co

Call us at +1 603 782 4622/+1 617 865 6588.

For more info, visit us at www.imagility.co

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